greygirlbeast (greygirlbeast) wrote,
greygirlbeast
greygirlbeast

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providence

I saw a little black T-shirt in a store window on Thayer Street in Providence today. You have to understand, it was a precious T-shirt, on a shapely little mannequin. I'd just spent an hour or so surrounded by many examples of That Certain Sort of College Girl. You know, the ones who're going to Brown (or wherever) to major in Marriage. Anyway, on the front of the shirt was printed the slogan, "I will never stop dreaming." Trite turns my stomach worse than maggots. Hell, trite turns my stomach worse than Republican politicians. "'I will never stop dreaming,'" I said to Spooky, quoting that curs'd shirt, and added, "Until I'm 40, my tits are sagging, and my husband has a mistress." I hope that was printed on the back of the T-shirt. I didn't look to see. Facts have an inconvenient way of destroying hope.

There are Yankees here in Rhode Island who think, just because it's June, it's summer. They are, of course, mistaken. The lows last night were somewhere in the forties. The highs today were somewhere in the seventies. That's spring, at best. It looked more like autumn, except everything was green. I think the sky is never summer here. It has that bottomless blue of October. That blue that makes me feel as though I might fall upwards.

What did we do today? Well, there was Thayer Street. We had an early lunch there at a Greek restaurant called Andreas. We walked about the Brown University campus, admiring the architecture. I was especially taken with the old Applied Mathematics building. We stopped by 598 Angell Street, where Lovecraft lived from 1904-1924. Across the street, there's a marvelous house that I think shall be important to Daughter of Hounds. I took a maple leaf from the tree in its front yard. We paused at 135 Benefit Street (Lovecraft's "shunned house"; my "yellow house on Benefit Street"). We visited the Old North Burial Ground and spent much of the afternoon gleaning names from gravestones. The best character names come from gravestones. Narcissa Snow, for example, came from a gravestone in Swan Point. After the press of Thayer Street, the abandoned graveyard was a welcome change. I can be in a crowd of dead people with no ill effects whatsoever. Funny, that. But Spooky and I both noticed a general unpleasantness about Old North that we don't tend to associate with cemeteries. It didn't feel right, or healthy, or...I can't quite find the word. So we didn't stay as long as we might have.

Then we drove down to Roger Williams Park, near Cranston, and visited the Museum of Natural History just before it closed. It's a quaint little affair. The building that houses it is marvelous, but the collection seems mostly to have been donated by local natural history enthusiasts and is displayed in an entirely haphazard fashion. I suspect a lack of funds. I did see some Carboniferous-aged plant fossils from Pawtucket, and there were some spectacular remains of a right whale just inside the entrance (both mandibles and three vertebrae). When the museum closed, we drove down to Scarborough Beach, though it's not a beach I'm particularly fond of; too much sea weed, stinking at low tide, and too many tourist. As the sun set, we walked to the ruins at the north end of the beach, where the sand is replaced by an outcrop of the Permian-aged (275 million years old) Narragansett Pier Granite. The stone ruins are fairly dramatic, and Spooky says they're all that remains of a restaurant or night club that burned back in the forties. Spooky says she may be misremembering, so don't quote her. After dark, we drove over the state line to Stonington, just to have someplace to go until we were too tired to go anymore.

That was today. Better than frelling yesterday.

Fun fact: I have discovered that wild grapes are the kudzu of the North. It even grows into monsters, just like kudzu! From a few feet away, the leaves look almost identical. I wonder if goats will eat it; they won't eat kudzu.
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